Arlington Anthology: Field of Honor with Ron MacDonald on The Writestream

Arlington Anthology: Field of Honor with Ron MacDonald on The Writestream

Please join me on Wednesday, November 29 at 11 AM Eastern when author Ron MacDonald joins me on The Writestream to discuss his book, Arlington Anthology: Field of Honor.

Heart-wrenching and uplifting stories of loyalty, brotherhood, perseverance, and heroism

Across the Potomac River from Washington D.C., lies this nation’s most sacred of grounds, Arlington National Cemetery. Upon these hollowed grounds are buried some of our nation’s finest from as far back as the Revolutionary War to today. Some 310,000 men and women call Arlington their final resting place. Here lie two of our nation’s Presidents, honored statesmen, explorers, literary figures, Chief Justices, and Astronauts. From our Generals and Admirals to the common soldier and sailor rest here as do some 3,800 former slaves who fled to freedom call Arlington their home. It is their stories that beg to be heard, stories of courage against insurmountable odds, of love of brother and country, and of sacrifice. Stories of hopes and dreams and choices made during adversity. It is thru these stories that we to can learn that one person can make a difference and that thru valor and bravery the course of this country and the life of each and every one of us has been changed. These noble souls, who reside here, still live with us, and bid us to think of life, not death and to listen and learn what they have done who now rest in Arlington.

Preview and purchase the book on Amazon.com.

About Ron MacDonald

A native Californian, Ron MacDonald has been an accomplished and published photographer for over 20 years. While traveling and photographing in Europe he visited many historical cemeteries, including Omaha Beach Cemetery, where he found his uncle’s final resting place. His love of history drove him to tell the untold stories of those who reside at Arlington National Cemetery.

To listen to the interview on Wednesday, November 29 at 11 AM Eastern, click here. Listen by phone at (347) 945-7246 and press “1” to ask Ron a question on the air.

UPDATE: Did you miss today’s informative, inspiring interview? Click below to listen.

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Hacksaw Ridge is a True Story of Heroism and Conviction

Last night, I finally had an opportunity to watch Hacksaw Ridge, a Mel Gibson film based on the true story of Desmond Doss, a conscientious objector during World War II, who served his country without a weapon:

HACKSAW RIDGE is the extraordinary true story of Desmond Doss [Andrew Garfield] who, in Okinawa during the bloodiest battle of WWII, saved 75 men without firing or carrying a gun. He was the only American soldier in WWII to fight on the front lines without a weapon, as he believed that while the war was justified, killing was nevertheless wrong. As an army medic, he single-handedly evacuated the wounded from behind enemy lines, braved fire while tending to soldiers and was wounded by a grenade and hit by snipers. Doss was the first conscientious objector awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor.

Featuring an exceptionally talented cast, with Andrew Garfield in the role of Desmond Doss, the film portrays the horrors of war and its effect on everyday people in multiple ways. Desmond’s father, who harbors resentment and bitterness over losing his buddies in World War I, directs his anger in violent ways toward his wife and sons; Desmond’s mother, who deals with her husband’s cruelty with grace and strength while protecting her sons; and Desmond himself, who recognizes the call to fight evil and protect freedom, but stands strong in his convictions to do it in his own way.

He almost never gets his chance, thanks to unforgiving higher-ups within the military. Even members of his own unit scorn his aversion to guns and doubt his usefulness in the “hell-fire of war.” Among other things, he endures physical abuse, serves time in a military prison, and misses his own wedding before he is cleared to accompany his unit to Hacksaw Ridge, where he earns their respect through his unyielding acts of courage, which result in 75 lives saved.

Gibson does not sugar-coat the atrocities of war, even when justified – his graphic portrayal of blood, guts and severed limbs makes you feel as if you’re right there in the middle of the battle. In one scene, when the enemy comes out waving a white flag in what turns out to be an act of deception, you can almost feel the conflicted emotions of the American soldiers in the seconds before they realize they must return fire. It provides a stark contrast to another scene in which Desmond shows mercy toward a severely wounded enemy soldier who regards him with suspicion. One of the most poignant scenes in the film comes when Desmond’s former nemesis, now in awe of the man he once considered a coward, asks for his forgiveness.

With all of the insanity currently unfolding in our country, Hacksaw Ridge was a great escape, even if it pulls no punches about the brutality of conflict and the existence of evil. Above all, it celebrates true heroism and a man who refused to let anyone interfere with his calling to serve. Desmond didn’t organize an anti-war protest, nor did he ridicule or spit upon the men who took up arms in the defense of the United States Constitution. He saw clearly the distinction between good and evil, and held firm to his mission to serve in way that was compatible with his conscience. He stands out among The Greatest Generation.

 

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Happy Independence Day!

Happy Independence Day!

Watch this excellent documentary from the History Channel to appreciate the courage and determination of the ragtag army that defeated the greatest military force in the world at the time. I am forever grateful and proud to be an American, where we still have the right to dream, work, and create the life of our choosing. It’s the reason why Independence Day is one of my favorite holidays.

The American Revolution is the ultimate example of what men and women can accomplish with belief, faith, desire, bravery, persistence and the knowledge that “all men are created equal, endowed by their Creator with inalienable rights, chief among these life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”

“Your rights come, not from the King, not from the government, but from God.”

Our Founders and those who fought to gain our independence, along with everyone who has served in uniform since, are an inspiration and a reason to give thanks every day. God bless America.

 

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Writestream Tuesday with Donna Lyons – UPDATED with Archive

I’m so psyched that the multi-talented Donna Lyons is coming back to Writestream Tuesday on October 27:

Donna Lyons is a Military News Journalist, Author, Talk Show Host and Managing Editor based in Washington, D.C and California. She has been featured on national news and local news (Fox and CNN) along with national and local radio shows. She’s published in Military News, Defense News, Veterans Affairs, Military Communities, Army Special Forces, Navy SEALs, Law Enforcement, WWII Veterans, Female Service Members and International Military Travel, along with two weekly columns for Examiner.com. She is also an author with Arundel Publishing in New York.

Donna’s writing has concentrated on the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, highlighting the positive aspects of individuals, projects and programs that benefit our military, veterans, wounded warriors and their families. She does her best to offer a nonpartisan and inspiring journalistic view, working in tandem with numerous veterans and military organizations.

During the show we’ll talk about Donna’s exceptional career and her advocacy work on behalf of military veterans and their families. If you would like to call in to ask her a question, dial (347) 945-7246 and press ‘1.’ To listen via your computer, click on this link to Writestream Tuesday: Author, Journalist, and Talk Show Host Donna Lyons.

UPDATE: Missed the live show? Click to listen.

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